Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gingerbread Boy Story and Backpack

Each year we build gingerbread houses as part of our classroom party. The children have a blast and I run around the whole time looking for finger lickers. It's just too tempting for these little munchkins sometimes. Their parents would never forgive me if I send them home with a cold during their two week break. Hand sanitizer is my friend during this event.
I wanted to have a few activities with this theme leading up to this grand finale, so I thought we would do a few lessons with our favorite cookie... the Gingerbread Man. I'll be using the reader with my ESL group and focus on vocabulary. This will be a perfect reader for them to build their confidence and brainstorm words that describe animals.

 Normally, I would make the backpack for the kids to keep their retell cards in, as well a memory game they can take with them to play at home. This year, we are making sweet little 3 x 6 ceramic tiles as Christmas gifts. I'll have them using their finger tips to form a Christmas tree, put in the kiln, and add a ribbon. Presto! A keepsake a parent would cherish forever. I'll post them when they are complete. I thought these sweet gingerbread  bags would be perfect to place their gift in. Place a little tissue paper inside and the wrapping couldn't get any easier.

Find this packet by clicking here.
So easy to do.

I hope everyone is enjoying the start of December. We have an entire neighborhood a few miles from where I live that decorates their homes to the max. Think Griswald Christmas. I love it. The gaudier the better. We've gone three times since Thanksgiving. What do you love most about this season?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Mooseltoe and Olive the Other Reindeer

We have three school weeks until Christmas and I'm wondering how I'm going to get it all done. One of the best things about this time of year in first grade are the stories. I LOVE all the wonderful Christmas stories. Two of my all time favorites are Mooseltoe and Olive the Other Reindeer

I made some activities to go along with these stories. I'm always in need of finding meaningful lessons for my parents to use during their small groups. So many of these are perfect for just that. Often I read a book and don't ask enough questions afterwards. I sometimes feel like we are having to rush from here to there. Now that I have some follow up activities ready to go, I hope to really focus on comprehension.

The two craftivities in the set I love, love, love. First, with Moose, who doesn't love glitter and sequins? Really what more needs to be said. Olive is a craft and puzzle built into one. I love giving the kids the triangles and then telling them they need to use the 9 small triangles to make one large triangle. I always have a few figure it out before I start giving clues. You can also flip the large triangle, cut 9 small green triangles and PRESTO - you have a Christmas tree. Just add sequins for ornaments.

Check it out! Click here.
Here's another fun option to try.